Real Life in the Tembisa Region

Today I had the opportunity to participate in four Tembisa Region family distributions. The Tembisa Region is a barren township where blacks were unjustly evicted from Johannesburg during South Africa’s dark history. We went to four families in the region to distribute a box of instant noodles and warm blankets.

The first family we visited consisted of a grandmother with her children and grandchildren. What struck me the most was the living condition of each home. For example, the family lived in a house with mostly a dirt floor, metal siding and a metal roof. Leaks were possible and flies flew around the ceilings of the homes. A paraffin stove was burning full blast and used as a space heater. These stoves had the possibility of burning down the entire community. Actually, this usually happens 4-5 times a week.

Other than this danger of losing their home, the grandmother also had a broken wheelchair. Usually the grandmother would use the wheelchair as a means of transportation, but only recently has the wheelchair broken down. When I handed over the instant noodles and a blanket, I felt really fortunate that I have a lot of food and a good home. But what I thought was touching was that the adults and children did not look sad, but they actually looked happy. Some people, including myself, in the United States are not satisfied with the life they have, but visiting this village truly opened my eyes and hopefully the eyes of other people.

Today was a good day and I had many inspiring experiences.

Until next time,

Posted by The Power of 5 - South Africa · Aug 8, 2011